And by Spring, of course I mean Summer (almost) but here in Utah the two seem to disappear into each other quickly.
In any case, the last I noticed cognitively, it was mid-December. The last I blogged it was latter-February. So, something has gone wrong here.
And that thing is: shame.
Oh, Lisa, you have tried so hard not to let this thing get to you, but then here you see it has been lurking in the corners for the past few months, without so much as letting you know.
It has been nearly a month since I opened my WIP. My second-draft, bringing-it-so-much-closer-to-awesome-this-time-around WIP. And the thing that has keeping it shut on my computer, more than my busy schedule or my attempting to spend down time with my husband…. is shame.
I had not realized it while it was happening, but shame was slowly overtaking me, creeping into my mind and heart ever-so-slowly that I didn’t realize it was there.
Because. Well, I’ve been in this game for a long time. And while I know that most first novels are ‘put it in a drawer and try again’ awful…. this isn’t really my first novel, and it is (as claimed by others, not just me!) NOT unsalvageably awful. I even have a plan to get it done and make it really good—or at least good enough to get a yes, so far as I can imagine, and that will have to do. I can get to the point where I admit that it is good ENOUGH.
So why the shame? Largely, I admit, it is because of the casual naysayers. I don’t tell most people in my life that I’m working on a novel, or that I have a completed draft, largely because this novel is SO much more complex than all of the other stories that I’ve worked on, and yet I want THIS one to be my debut, so I’ve put others on hold, and because of this, when I do say that I have a completed first draft of a novel, people assume that I’m close to getting it published.
Pssh. As if this is a thing you can just go and do. (Okay, if you’re going the Indie Route, sure, you can… but that has never been my particular dream).
So when people at work casually tease me with “So when can I buy your novel?” or “So when are you doing to publish that book?” I bristle and freeze.
And it makes me not want to work on the book. I’ve been reading, but not blogging, and ultimately, not writing. I’ve been letting other people’s dismissal of my dreams get to me. Which is utterly shameful.
So instead I take pictures of geese and ducks and their babies. Not a bad venture, by half, but…. not my dream. (Disclaimer: this is not actually a full-time venture)
And I’m not ready to let this dream go. So I’m hoping to rouse my spirits and get my focus back on. Yes, I’m busy, but I can’t ever get any writing done if I don’t make time for it. I can’t bring this fantastic adventure to life and into the minds and hearts of readers without finishing, finishing, finishing.
And in the meanwhile… perhaps a Tales From the Hollow Tree story. I have been desperately wanting to get back to writing shorts. Definitely, definitely no more hiding from my blog or WIP, though.
And if you have any tips for channeling a baddie when you are really a very nice person (you know, depending on who’s asking)… please send them along!